All it took was the title to get me hooked on this book. With the title The Bazaar of Bad Dreams Stephen King creates an immediately moody image of a dark marketplace, full of creatures with eyes glowing as you walk past. Who knows what you’ll see at the next stall, your only guarantee is that it won’t be pleasant. What comes after this title doesn’t disappoint with King proving that talent doesn’t age, in his newest book he’s still scary as hell and funnier than ever. The eclectic collection shows King trying on a bit of everything, from the subtle to the far-out unbelievable. Although most famous for his scary monsters, stories like ‘Morality’ and ‘Premium Harmony’ see him concentrating on the human world. He creates realistic characters whose worlds seem to stretch beyond the short stories in this book. These stories are something of a respite between the horror King weaves with unique concepts from deep in that twisted brain of his.
Although far from King’s first collection of short stories he immediately sets this book apart by introducing each story to his audience. This is my favourite part of the book as he peels back the curtain a little and allows his Constant Reader a glimpse into the process of creating these nightmares. It’s fascinating to see how the simplest of things can trigger a whole tale and he’s great about giving credit to those who inspired by him.
Don’t let the phrase ‘short’ story deter you, there is plenty of King to sink your teeth into. The horror will have you on the edge of your seat, rooting for the hero. Did I mention the laughs? His pop culture references are worth looking out for (Beliebers beware!), especially when he’s referencing his own cultural impact.
~Megan, QBD Miranda